Why Agent Provocateur Had Ballerinas Get Down And Dirty

If you haven’t already considered working out in luxury lingerie, you need only consume approximately three seconds of Agent Provocateur’s new campaign until it becomes your new way of life.


In celebration of their SS19 collection the storied British brand recruited choreographer-to-the-stars Danielle Polanco (of Beyoncé, Janet Jackson and J. Lo fame) to whip 22 dancers into shape for a campaign video chock-full of bumping and grinding to “Pump it the Jam” by the Technetronic — all in new season lingerie, of course. 


The move speaks volumes, considering Agent Provocateur’s body positive-pivot in recent years. Fresh off featuring curve model-cum-activist Charli Howard in a Valentine’s Day-themed shoot, creative director Sarah Shotton was once again inspired to deviate from the traditional modus operandi of the lingerie industry. Physical strength and femininity are not mutually exclusive, the campaign says, with the starring dancers’ rippling muscles become something of a rallying cry.


“We both felt that to get the message across about Agent Provocateur being for everyone we needed a troupe of dancers who were diverse and strong in both body and personality,” explains Shotton. “For me the campaign is provocative, cheeky, and shows the strength of the women.”


Pump it Up! was conceptualized after the mood board Shotton created for AP’s  latest collection consisted primarily of images of dancers and lycra-clad women attempting aerobics. It wasn’t long before dancers were flown to New York for a day of rehearsals and fittings, before shooting the following day. Ballerina Kylie Shea, spotlighted in the video on the barre, claims while it was physically challenging, the process was nothing less than “magical.”


“Agent Provocateur is fearless in the pursuit of encouraging women to express themselves on their own terms,” Shea says, adding: “as they push and provoke boundaries, I am absolutely inspired to be unapologetic in my pursuit to do the same.”


This takeaway couldn’t be more reflective of Shotton’s intentions. While she vocalizes her endeavor to maintain the Agent Provocateur DNA—that is, “oozing sex appeal”—while at the helm, she wants every creative output from the brand to have a conscious message.


“It’s about diversity and inclusivity fused with fantasy and escapism.”


Check out Agent Provocateur’s SS19 campaign video below.


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